How to Build a Geodesic Dome

Written by ehow home & garden editor
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Geodesic domes are relatively simple to construct, though the process can take hours. The premise of the dome was made popular by Buckminster Fuller. Geodesic domes can now be found just about everywhere, including Disney World.

Skill level:
Moderately Challenging

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Instructions

  1. 1

    Visit Desert Domes dome calculator to find your dimensions. When you choose one of the 6 size options, you get the triangle and strut measurements.

  2. 2

    Build a geodesic dome frame, which you can use to support parachute fabric, sheets or mosquito netting. In this case, you can use bamboo, and the only tools you need are a pocket knife and string. Directions for the bamboo dome can also be found at Desert Domes.

  3. 3

    Calculate the size of your triangles. If you are going to build a complete dome, not just the frame, you must cut the triangles the correct size. There are two sets of triangles: AAA and ABB. For a portable dome, you need about 10 AAA triangles and 30 ABB triangles.

  4. 4

    Place your dome on the ground, or give it height by constructing a base. Get 10 base panels cut as wide as the AAA triangles and cut to whatever height you need to make the base.

  5. 5

    Consider where you plan to put the dome and its use. Greenhouse domes need ventilation and sturdy frames that can support a water system and constant humidity. Plain dirt or graveled floors might work best in this case. Camping domes just need ventilation and to be rain- and wind-proof. This can be accomplished with painted and sealed double-ply cardboard. Children's playhouse domes can be bought in kit form made of snap together plastic.

  6. 6

    Assemble the dome with at least 2 adults. If you are constructing your dome in a windy area, or are making a large dome, at least 3 adults should work together.

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